The Boston Red Sox are having a historic season. They currently baseball's best record, sit at least 50 games over .500, and have three AL MVP candidates: Mookie Betts, J.D. Martinez and... Chris Sale. Betts's having an outstanding season, leading the majors in batting average (.350), while Martinez leads the league in homers (37) and RBIs (104). However, Sale is having an outstanding season in his own right.
Sale has the American League's best ERA for a starting pitcher (1.97) and has a ERA of 0.20 over his last seven starts. Sale's WHIP is 0.85 and opponents are batting .175 against him. Sale's projected to have 293 strikeouts, which is impressive considering he's been injured for a portion of the season. Sale's K/9 (13.50) leads the majors and his FIP is the lowest in MLB (1.95). Sale has been an imposing force on the mound, with his pitches having so much movement to them that he's been practically untouchable. As a result, the stats show how dominant he's been.
Mookie Betts's WAR (8.1) is the best in the majors, but Sale's (6.0) is up there. Still, Sale may not get as much consideration for the AL MVP race considering that he's a pitcher; the last AL MVP to be a starting pitcher was Justin Verlander of the Detroit Tigers in 2011. Still, Sale's dominance on the mound cannot be overlooked, especially with what he's done in his past seven starts. After all, people don't expect a starting pitcher to strike out at least ten batters every start they have. Sale may be the exception to that rule along with being the exception to the pitcher-as-the-MVP rule.
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